ASAJA Alicante has reported that, despite forecasts, there were no significant frosts in the Vega Baja area. The cold wasn't as harmful to the region's agricultural sector as was feared. In fact, it also had a positive effect: its arrival in Europe has reactivated lemon trading operations, which had been stagnant since the beginning of December, and the price of both citrus and vegetables has skyrocketed.
The citrus sector had no significant damage and farmers are now trading the Fine Lemon at around 0.25 euro/kilo in the field, i.e. 39% higher than last week. Prices are expected will continue to grow as days go by and if there is more frost damage, as has been recorded in other producing areas of Spain.
The harvest of the Navelina orange is coming to an end at a good pace and its price stands at 0.20 euro/kilo, i.e. 21% more than in the previous season. The cutting of the Navel Late and Lane varieties will begin next week, with operations already closed that represents a 15% increase. Mandarins are also registering favorable operations, with varieties such as Hernandina reaching a price of 0.42 euro/kilo, i.e. 17% more than in the previous season.
There were no intense frosts, but the low temperatures affected the artichoke crops staining the leaves of a large part of the production from Vega Baja. As a result, much of the harvest won't be destined for the first category. Despite this, farmers have seen how the price of this crop has skyrocketed by 50% and has gone from 1.50-2.00 euro/kilo to 3.00 euro/kilo in a few days.
The rest of the horticultural crops are experiencing the same trend. Cauliflower and broccoli, which 20 days ago were being sold for 0.30-0.60 euro/kilo in the field, are being sold for 1.50-1.60 euro/kilo this week, i.e. a 200% increase in average.
"We at ASAJA Alicante would like to reiterate the importance of ensuring crops. Meteorological accidents are becoming more severe and unexpected and farmers have to know that the only tool we have against this problem is agricultural insurance. We are affected by frosts, hail, cold fronts, or accidents that can make producers lose the investment of a whole year and ruin employers in a few hours. Thus, it is essential producers assure their production. They must understand that it's another work tool,” the president of ASAJA Alicante, Eladio Aniorte, stated.